Determinism is the theory that
examination of one or more definable factors allows for a complete explanation and
prediction of the characteristics of society or the individual.
To argue that societies gain all
their central characteristics from the psychological drives of human beings is a form of
psychological determinism, and to explain the social role and behavior of men and women by reference chiefly to their sex is
biological determinism. Crime and Criminology
never really embraced the psychological determinism inherent in most learning
Genetic Determinism -
How Not to Interpret Behavioral Genetics
Huib Looren de Jong, Vrije Universiteit, Theory & Psychology, Vol. 10, No. 5, 615-637
Recently, investigators in behavioral genetics have found loci on the genome (so-called
`quantitative trait loci' or QTLs) that are associated with complex mental traits, such as
anxiety or novelty seeking. The interpretation of these findings raises interesting
At first sight, the discovery of
'genes-for-personality' seems to support genetic determinism and reductionism. Genetic
determinism is the view that the phenotype is precoded in or determined by the genotype.
However, evidence from developmental biology and neural modeling indicates that
development is a result of interactive processes at many levels, not only the genome, so
that geneticism must be rejected.
Brain, Sex and Ideology -
Catherine Vidal, Institut Pasteur, Paris
Diogenes, Vol. 52, No. 4, (2005) International Council for Philosophy and Humanistic
Since the 19th century, and despite tremendous progress in science, the topic of 'brain
and sex' remains a matter of misleading interpretations, far beyond the field of science.
The media are not solely responsible for this situation. Some scientific circles still
actively promote the ideology of biological determinism in their attempt to explain
differences in behavior and cognitive abilities between men and women.
Psychological Determinism and the Evolving Nursing Paradigm
E. Carol Polifroni, Sheila Packard, RN; PhD, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT
Nursing Science Quarterly, Vol. 6, No. 2, 63-68 (1993)
The authors suggest that the behaviorist theories of locus of control, self-efficacy, and
the health belief model are derived from deterministic philosophical premises. These
premises are in direct conflict with the premise of free will. As interpreted by the
authors and many others, the emerging paradigm of nursing relies on the free will of the
individual, the ability of the individual to choose for himself/herself what course of
action to take, to avoid, or to pursue. The authors address the psychological
deterministic philosophical premises within the three theories and utilize nursing
theories to compare and contrast the views of free will and determinism.